A new family tradition brings Christmas cheer to the community

Dec 24, 2021, 5:42 PM
Brooklynn Loftus receiving a Christmas card with cash from Truly Brady....
Brooklynn Loftus receiving a Christmas card with cash from Truly Brady.

SOUTH JORDAN— A few dozen of Santa’s helpers today spread a little extra Christmas kindness across the Salt Lake Valley. They call it The Christmas Card Project.

“The Christmas Card Project is just really a way of spreading a little bit of Christmas cheer out in the community,” said Josh Downs, who came up with the idea with his family and friends.

It was a way for them to immerse themselves in the Christmas spirit, and share it with strangers.

“We’re letting people know that they are thought of, that they are seen, that they’re loved, and we’re giving them a Christmas card.”

Those handmade cards came with a $50 or $100 bill, a poem written by Downs, and a star to hang on the Christmas tree.

“We’re just assembling these cards, with a sweet message inside, to let those out there that might be struggling, or feeling alone, that they are a little more loved on Christmas,” said Josie Christensen, Josh’s sister.

Many from their extended family pitched in on the project: the beginning of a new family tradition.

“It just helps the kids, and ourselves not to think of ourselves during this time,” said Christensen. “It’s a special time to focus on other people and that’s what Christmas is all about.”

Through the generosity of more than 100 people that Downs connected with online, they were able to raise more than $8600, that they gifted to strangers, randomly, throughout the community.

“We’re just going to go out, and wherever we’re lead, try to find people who we feel like could really use this this time of year,” Downs said.

After gathering to collect the gift cards for distribution, more than three dozen people headed out for the first Christmas Card Project. So I’m headed for the Riverton Hospital period others went to South Jordan shopping areas.

Truly Brady and her daughters were filled with the joy of Christmas as they surprised shoppers.

“Many of us have put our hearts into it,” Brady said as she greeted strangers with unexpected kindness and even a hug.

Brooklynn Loftus shared a hug with Brady after receiving a card and said it was “just Christmas amazingness.” For Loftus, it was a reminder of the power of generosity and goodness.

“Christmas has a really soft spot in my heart,” she said. “It reminded me that love is everywhere and people are amazing.”

One woman was so moved when she opened the card that she returned to thank Brady again.

“It really opened my heart,” she told Brady, after reading the card, and the enclosed poem. “I want to donate this to somebody else, I want to pass it on.”

One gesture of love inspiring another.

“We decided that this would be a great way to include a lot of people and tie it into the holiday season and be able to make a difference,” said Downs.

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